Among the schools recruiting the talented multi-positional athlete are UNC, Rutgers, Cincinnati and Temple, which was his most recent official visit. North Carolina has not offered a scholarship at this point and the Tar Heels are waiting on Hartsfield (5-11, 185) to receive the green light from UNC admissions.
"It's just that I am trying to go where I am most comfortable at -- where I fit in best," Hartsfield told IC late Sunday night from his home in Los Angeles. "I want to go to UNC but I am waiting on an offer. I think I can wait and I think things will fall into place."
A big factor with Hartsfield is that UNC coach John Bunting played in Kenan Stadium and knows what it means to put on a UNC football jersey.
"When I found out he played there, that was a big thing. He was an upfront guy, really approachable and I could talk to him. He just seems like he loves football, just like me."
Bunting talked with Hartsfield about being an impact player. He also told him that it was important to finish up his remaining required courses.
For now, Hartsfield and UNC are playing the waiting game. He has yet to clear the admissions process and has one more semester at Pasadena City College (Calif.). For those not familiar with Hartsfield, he took an official visit with a group of JUCOs from California in November.
According to at least two of the other recruits that made the visit with Hartsfield said they expect him to ink with North Carolina. Former UNC target and recent Arizona State verbal commitment Justin Burks said Hartsfield spent a small fortune in the student store.
"He bought a bunch of UNC stuff," Burks said in a November interview with IC. "I bet he is blue today. I think he is ready, and that seems like it's the place for him I think."
Pasadena City College coach Tom Maher told IC shortly after Hartsfield's visit that his trip went well.
"Let's just say he is looking blue," Maher said. "He really enjoyed it and I know he likes the Tar Heels. He was impressed."
As a running back this season, Hartsfield gained more than 600 yards and added 400 receiving. He was a first team all-conference selection last year at wide receiver with 28 catches for 400 yards and was the number one kick returner in his California JUCO league. He is also a cornerback and runs a 4.4 forty.
Hank Ives – publisher and editor of JCgrid-wire.com, which is based in Orange County (Calif.) – said Hartsfield is a multiple position player who started as just a wide receiver. Ives saw Hartsfield play six times the past two seasons and said he filled whatever role Pasadena needed him to.
"He started out at receiver and was very competent at that. Then, they needed a running back and he was gaining 100 yards there. Then, they shifted him to receiver and cornerback. He is pretty versatile. He is very quick and I think he would be a good catch.
"I think probably receiver would be his number one spot but that is only from quick observations, I wouldn't want to pin that on him because he can play either one. He can run really well."
Hartsfield said his visit was important because it exposed him to a more serene environment than what he has grown accustomed to living in south central Los Angeles.
"I like the environment because it's more peaceful. I like the way I was treated by the people in the town and at the school. There are trees everywhere, but I like it, one day I would like to have a cabin with a lake or whatever. So yeah, I liked it."
The highlight came when he saw what could be his jersey in Kenan Stadium and the now standard meal at Spanky's on Franklin Street.
"That was exciting when everyone was holding up signs (showing our pictures), that was real nice," Hartsfield said of patrons that showed up to welcome the group of recruits at Spanky's. "Then we went on the field and they had jerseys and the staff was just really nice."
Hartsfield projects himself at either defensive back or wide receiver next season. But he isn't so sure he couldn't also play running back.
"I guess we will see, but I think I can play all three."